Heeding God’s call: Accountant, nurse among Davao’s new priests

Heeding God’s call: Accountant, nurse among Davao’s new priests
Four priests were ordained recently in the Archdiocese of Davao with two of them having worked as professionals prior to entering the priestly life. Archbishop of Davao Romulo G. Valles said the Church invites professionals to heed God’s call to serve His people through priesthood. BRENDA MILAN

DAVAO CITY—They have made an oath to become good professionals, as an accountant and as a nurse, but things have turned out differently as they made another vow follow Jesus.

Two new priests from the Archdiocese of Davao have chosen to leave heir professions in order to enter the seminary and train themselves in the academic and spiritual rigors of priestly life.

“Our new priests are good example of those who have already worked and practiced their profession. There’s a big possibility that you may also be called to serve as priests,” said
Archbishop of Davao Romulo G. Valles during the rites of ordination held on separate dates, noting how those who are already professionals can still be called by God to serve Him in the priesthood.

A priest, a CPA

Fr. Emman Calumpong, a CPA, received the gift of priesthood on May 6, at his home parish, the Ascension of the Lord Parish in this city, the first ordination in the 15 years of the parish’s existence.

The priest had previously served as an accountant under the Chancery of the Archdiocese of Davao and as a senior accountant of an accounting firm before entering the Holy Apostles Senior Seminary in Manila where he finished his theological studies.

Calumpon followed in the footsteps of his elder brother, Fr. Jade Calumpong, who is a senior priest in Davao del Sur under the Diocese of Digos.

Today, Calumpong is already serving as director of the San Lorenzo College of Davao, an archdiocesan school.

A nurse turned priest

Fr. Jeus Jardin started his journey in the priesthood when he entered the St. Francis Xavier College Seminary but left after being advised “to go out and experience the world” outside the seminary walls.

He was in his fourth year in Philosophy when he decided to pursue a degree outside the seminary. Jardin graduated from nursing, eventually practicing as a professional nurse. Not only that, he went on to higher studies, paving the way for him to become a clinical instructor, teaching aspiring nurses.

It was in 2010 when he applied to go back to the seminary and was sent to finish Philosophy at the University of Navarra in Spain where he was also ordained a deacon in 2016.

He was ordained to the priesthood on April 22 at the Shrine of the Our Lady of the Perpetual Rosary in Cabantian, Davao City.

“I only share with the bishop’s priesthood. Without him, I will not be ordained,” Jardin said referring to Valles.

Two more servants in Davao

Aside from the two, there are also two new priests who began to share in the bishop’s priesthood last April.

Fr. Christopher Alcayde and Fr. Matt Bernard Quiao were classmates in St. Francis Xavier College Seminary in Catalunan Grande, both graduating in 2010.

Alcayde studied theology at the nearby St. Francis Xavier Regional Major Seminary while Quiao was sent to study theology at the University of Navarra in Spain, and was ordained deacon before returning to Davao City for his diaconal program.

Both ordained by Valles, Alcayde was ordained on April 24 at his home parish in San Isidro Labrador Parish in Lumondao, Davao City, while Quiao was ordained April 26, at the Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Davao City.

The four new priests celebrated their thanksgiving Mass at the San Pedro Cathedral in Davao City on May 17. CBCPNews